By Sahil Patel
Crackle, the ad-supported VOD platform from Sony Pictures Entertainment, will shut down its service in the UK next month.
Per Broadband TV News, UK users who visit the Crackle site are hit with the following message:
“We’d like to thank all those who have supported and enjoyed Crackle UK. As of April 1, 2014 Crackle’s UK service will no longer be operating.”
No official reason has been provided yet by Sony on why it’s shutting down the service. But it’s easy to speculate that it’s due to the increase in digital VOD activity in the UK, led by Netflix and the recently rebranded Amazon Prime Instant Video, as well as online video players from broadcasters like BBC and BSkyB. In a relatively small market, each of those platforms already have an established user base, and the resources to compete for content rights that Sony might not be willing to spend on. But, again, none of that has been confirmed as the reason by Sony.
Crackle is home to original series such as the Milo Ventimiglia-produced “Chosen,” “Cleaners,” as well as original feature films like “Extraction,” in addition to an array of archived films and TV shows.
Other markets Crackle is available in, including the US, Canada, Latin America, and Australia, appear to be unaffected.